by Tara McInnes, for Third Sector
We often read in the papers of cases where people have been accused of taking advantage of their position as “attorney”. A power of attorney is when one person is appointed by another to manage their affairs, should they not be mentally capable of doing so themselves because of illness or accident.
Just last month, in the case The Public Guardian v JW, a businessman had his power of attorney over his mother’s finances revoked after allegations of misconduct. But this case is one of many, as the courts often deal with unscrupulous characters who have used their position as attorney to transfer funds and assets from the person’s estate into their own name. The impact on charities? They’re losing out in cases where they had been set to inherit from the estate in a person’s will.
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